What do Thurston Moore, Anne Waldman, Rebecca Foon and Jesse Paris Smith all have in common? They all united during POP Montreal in an event called Pathway to Paris. The event was to spread awareness about the crisis, climate change, on behalf of 350.org – a global climate movement.

I know you’d rather go get a latte, eat cookies, listen to a record or make out with your boyfriend instead of talk about climate change. I know you’d rather say, “Does climate change even exist? Does voting matter? Is the Illuminati real? Was 9/11 an inside job?!”

Global issues do not affect people in North America, right? We’re comfortable, we have our needs met, and it doesn’t really affect our ability to have fun, consume, and be distracted.

Well, now that I have you all ready to defend the lackadaisical days you spend sighing contentedly over a hungover brunch, how about you go sign up at 350.org – they do projects and actions, and are getting shit done in 188 countries.

Because yes, climate change exists, and is an issue that needs to be addressed, not lost in the shuffle of political Internet articles that you share on your Facebook but don’t actually read.

Email is how the organization connects: so sign up and get started.

The fundraiser took place at Theatre Rialto on the last night of POP. Performers included the aforementioned Thurston Moore (you’ve probably heard of him), the Barr Brothers’ own Brad Barr and Sarah Page in solo performances, A Silver Mount Zion’s Rebecca Foon playing songs off her new album, the incredibly indelible Anne Waldman reading Emily Dickenson poems over Jessie Paris Smith’s piano and Foon’s cello, and more. (Think Anne Waldman waving her arms, hollering the word Infinite, while you’re sitting in the ancient vaulted theatre hoping that humans really are…)

Artists have been using their clout to back crucial political issues for years. But as our species races eagerly, yet inexplicably, toward its own extinction (and by extension, damaging a planet that has done nothing but provide us with a natural paradise we are hell-bent on sucking the lifeblood from), it has become vital for those in the spotlight to speak up. Because lets face it, my little article is not going to get as much publicity as, say, Neil Young’s The Monsanto Years.

350.org wants us to tell world governments this:
“We need a climate deal that’s in line with the imperatives of science and justice. Keep 80% of fossil fuels in the ground and finance a just transition to 100% renewable energy by 2050.”

According to 350.org, hundreds of global governments will be meeting in Paris this December to try and come to a global climate agreement, in the biggest gathering of this sort since 2009.
350.org is headed to the city with this message:
“Keep fossil fuels in the ground- really just stop digging and drilling- and start building renewable energy everywhere we can. Turn off the old kind of energy that’s killing us, and turn on a renewable future. Do it now.

Not a complex message by any means. And it makes sense, doesn’t it? The technology is there. The know-how is there. The ability is there. And yet…switching over would keep a few multi-billionaire corporations from maintaining financial dominance over us.

Maybe someone ought to remind them that, though planetary takeover might be nice in theory, if there’s no planet left to takeover, that plan doesn’t really work, does it.